2021 Shannons Winter Timed Online Auction
Lot
143

1963 Brabham BT5 Sports Racing Car

Sydney

Sold

Specifications

Engine In-line 4-cylinder, 1600cc (see text)
Gearbox 5-speed manual (see text)
Body Work Open Two-Seater
Colour Yellow
Interior Black
Trim Vinyl
Wheels Cast Alloy
Brakes Discs

Description

This lot is no longer available

Founded by World Champion racing driver (Sir) Jack Brabham and chief designer Ron Tauranac in 1960, Motor Racing Developments rapidly became one of the major players in all forms of motorsport for the next decade, competing at every level from Formula One to Indianapolis.  Although the single-seaters took centre stage, Brabham also dabbled in sports car racing and the BT5 was the first two-seater model, sharing many of the components with the BT3 and BT6.  A competitor for Lotus?s 23, Ron Tauranac penned a multi-tubular spaceframe chassis with a rear-mounted Ford Cosworth twin-cam engine and Hewland Mark IV gearbox.  Suspension was via double wishbones at the front and reversed lower wishbones, top links and trailing arms at the rear, steering was rack and pinion and braking was via discs all round.  Just two examples were built, both campaigned by Ian Walker?s quasi-works racing outfit for Aussie drivers Frank Gardner and Paul Hawkins in 1963, the first with a 1500cc engine and the second initially running an 1100cc unit.  Debuting at Snetterton, Gardner won his class in the BT5?s maiden race in pouring rain and would later win the Guards Trophy at Brands Hatch ? ultimately both BT5s went on to successful careers with privateers in Europe and North America and fortunately both still exist today.  Brabham?s second attempt at building a sports racer, the BT8, was the only model to enter any kind of limited production with twelve made in 1964, usually powered by Climax engines and was ultimately stretched to become the one-off BT17 powered by a Repco V8 engine.  Intended for the lucrative Can-Am series in North America, the BT17A project foundered due to reliability issues.